Cowboys Respect Boise State, But Making No Concessions

There’s no debating Boise State’s stature in the Mountain West.

They are king of the hill.

And they have earned the respect of the rest of the Mountain West.

There is, however, a difference between respect and waving a white flag.

Wyoming opens its Mountain West Conference schedule by hosting Boise State in a Saturday game that will be televised by CBSSN. Kickoff is set for shortly after 5 p.m.

Saturday Lineup
Opponent: Boise State
Where: War Memorial
Kickoff: 5 p.m.
Radio: Cowboys Radio Network
Television: CBSSN
All-time record: Boise 10, Wyoming 1
Last Boise Win: Boise, 24-14, 2017
Last Wyoming Win: Wyoming, 30-28, 2016

The last time Boise came to Laramie – two years ago – the Cowboys rallied from a 21-7 deficit against a team ranked 13th in the country to pull out a 30-28 victory. It remains Wyoming’s only win in 12 games all-time against Boise State, and it is best remembered by the forced fumble by Cowboys defensive tackle Chase Appleby that lifted the Cowboys to victory, and led to the well-remembered safety dance by Josiah Hall.

After repaying the Cowboys in Boise a year ago, when the Broncos rallied from a 14-10 third quarter deficit to pull out a 24-14 victory, the growing MW rivalry is back on the high plains of Wyoming this year.

And the Cowboys aren’t backing down.

Yes, the Broncos have won 199 games since 2000, tied with Oklahoma for the most of any team in the country – and have won three of the last six MW titles.

But. …

Year Wyo vs. Boise St Result
2017 at Boise State 24, Wyoming 14
2016 at Wyoming 30, Boise State 28
2015 at Boise State 34, Wyoming 14
2014 boise State 63, at Wyoming 14
2013 at Boise State 48, Wyoming 7
2012 Boise State 45, at Wyoming 14
2011 at Boise State 36, Wyoming 14
2010* Boise State 51, at Wyoming 6
2007* at Boise State 24, Wyoming 14
2006* Boise State 17 at Wyoming 10

“There’s a different belief (than five years ago) even by me,” said Bohl. “It has gone from let’s not just look to go out and compete, let’s go out to win. That comes from a deep belief in the players, not only their level of commitment, but their deep belief in one other that we can win.”

Things did not go smoothly in the pre-conference portion of the Cowboys schedule. They split four games, being admittedly outmanned at Missouri, but disappointed in a home loss to Washington State that was marred by 13 penalties, including three personal fouls in the first half that extended Washington State drives, and seemed to take a toll in the fourth quarter when Washington State turned a 20-19 lead into a 41-19 victory with three fourth-quarter touchdowns.

The offense was sluggish two weeks ago, but the Cowboys did pull out a 17-14 victory against FCS Wofford, thanks to an 80-yard drive with no timeouts in the final two minutes of the game. That was closer than the Cowboys would have liked, but it was a profound statement about redshirt freshman Tyler Vander Waal, who was in complete control.

What gives the Cowboys a good feeling is that after having last week off, not only do they have a growing confidence in the efforts of Vander Waal, but they also are going to be healthier on Saturday than they have been since the season opened.

Against Wofford, the Cowboys went into the game with one healthy running back and one healthy tight end, among other ailments.

This week, tight end  and co-captain Austin Fort is No. 1 on the depth chart for the first time since being hurt in the season-opener at New Mexico State, and senior Nico Evans, who rushed for 190 yards in the opener at New Mexico State and had 89 yards against Washington State before suffering a rib injury on fifth play of the second half, forcing him to miss the rest of that game and the next two.

Even with a healthy roster, Bohl knows that the key to victory will be playing a crisp game, offensive and defensively.

“When you look at Boise State, it’s an excellent program,” he said.

And after listing a series of impressive elements with Boise, Bohl adds, “As a coach I’m personally excited about this game, excited we’re home, and I know our players are as well.”

2018 Cowboys Schedule TV Kickoff
Aug. 25, Wyoming at New Mexico State, 29-7 ESPN 8 p.m.
Sept. 1, Washington State at Wyoming, 41-19 CBSSN 1:30 p.m.
Sept. 8, at Missouri 40, Wyoming 13 ESPNU 5 p.m.
Sept. 15, at Wyoming 17, Wofford 14 MW Network 2 p.m.
Sept. 22, Bye
Sept. 29, Boise State at Wyoming CBSSN 5 p.m.
Oct. 6, at Hawaii None 10 p.m.
Oct. 13, at Fresno State ESPN TBD
Oct. 20, vs. Utah State AT&T 12:30 p.m.
Oct. 26 at Colorado State CBSSN 8 p.m.
Nov. 3 vs. San Jose state AT&T Noon
Nov. 10, Bye
Nov. 17, vs. Air Force ESPN TBA
Nov. 24, at New Mexico AT&T 12:30 p.m.
Tracy RingolsbyComment